OpenText Winning Over MSPs Seeking One-Stop SMB Cybersecurity-Data Protection Stack

“It’s one vendor, one brand, one program, one partner strategy, one go to market so customers and partners don’t need to work with multiple vendors,” said OpenText Vice President Ghassan “Guss” Lababidi. “OpenText Cybersecurity can provide all of it.”


OpenText, the $3.5 billion software company that has built a robust portfolio of cybersecurity and data protection solutions through acquisitions, is winning over MSPs looking for a “one-stop shop” for security and data protection.

MSPs at CRN parent The Channel Company’s XChange 2023 conference said they see OpenText providing a much-needed one-stop shop for all things cybersecurity and data protection.

Under the banner of its OpenText Cybersecurity division, the company is making it easy for MSPs to drive cybersecurity and data protection profits and sales growth with a single technology stack as a result of its acquisitions, said Melvin Williams, CEO of M&N Communications, Blue Bell, Pa.

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“I marvelled at what they are doing when I saw it here at XChange,” said Williams, who is making OpenText Cybersecurity his primary security provider. “It’s bringing everything under one roof. That makes it very easy for MSPs. We used to have to go to four different providers for different services. Now we can now get it all from OpenText.”

Williams anticipates a 50 percent increase in cybersecurity sales with OpenText this year as his full-stack cybersecurity and data protection platform.

[Related: OpenText CEO Mark Barrenechea: ‘Continued Acceleration Into The Cloud’ Is Our Priority]

After a string of acquisitions that began in 2019, OpenText’s portfolio now includes endpoint/threat intelligence software provider Webroot, data protection provider Carbonite, email encryption software provider Zix and security software provider AppRiver.

In January, OpenText added even more security muscle to its portfolio with the $5.8 billion acquisition of enterprise software provider Micro Focus.

The technology OpenText has acquired makes it unique, said Williams. “That made me look at providing all my security solutions from one provider,” he said. “They already have some very unique bundles with increased margins. They understand the MSP market. They are making it easy for us to walk into our clients and offer a full technology solutions stack with single pane of glass management where we can add all our licenses, DNS, security and even cybersecurity training.”

Sean Wright, founder and president of Affinity Technology Partners, Brentwood, Tenn., said OpenText Cybersecurity has added more breadth and depth to his security portfolio. The additional products in the OpenText Cybersecurity portfolio have helped drive a 25 percent annual compound growth rate for Affinity over the last three years with the vendor. “It has made us so much stronger for our clients,” Wright said. “We don’t have to go anywhere else. They have brought more to the table for us from security to archiving to backup for the cloud.”

OpenText Cybersecurity has opened the door for Affinity to standardize security procedures and processes for its customers, said Wright. “If you look at the security landscape, there are so many different pieces and vendors. Each one does one thing, and they don’t work together,” he said. “OpenText brings it all together in one place as opposed to it being all scattered.”

OpenText Cybersecurity is providing Affinity peace of mind as it tackles security challenge for its customers, said Wright. “This gives us confidence we can tackle those threats,” he said. “OpenText makes me feel like I have my armor on and I have someone standing with me. I know the solutions and the support are solid.”

Wright credited OpenText with leading the security software charge, working hand in hand with his company. “They are looking at what is happening in the industry and going upwards,” he said. “It’s a strong partnership that relies on OpenText being in the forefront of cybersecurity. They are out there doing it, and we are right there with them.”

OpenText is driving the ability for Affinity to scale its security business with a single pane of glass management platform from email and threat protection to Office 365 tools to cloud backup, said Wright. “They are one of our biggest vendors,” he said.

Anvar Alfi, president of Alfi Computers, Encino, Calif., said he sees OpenText filling a void in the MSP market with its broad security and data protection portfolio. “Consolidating all security and data protection on a single stack makes everything easier to integrate and implement,” he said. “I’m definitely going to look at OpenText. Security is the No. 1 concern for customers today.”

OpenText Cybersecurity–which has 23,000 partners globally, not including Micro Focus–stands out from competitors because of its ability to provide a full security and data protection stack for partners, said Ghassan “Guss” Lababidi, OpenText vice president of SMB partner and marketing enablement. “Partners want one vendor, one partner strategy, one partner program, one set of incentives and one billing cycle,” he said

The OpenText Cybersecurity division provides “an end-to-end portfolio” of SMB cybersecurity products and data security management products, said Lababidi. “It’s one vendor, one brand, one program, one partner strategy, one go to market so customers and partners don’t need to work with multiple vendors,” he said. “OpenText Cybersecurity can provide all of it.”

Lababidi’s message to partners: “You do not need to go anywhere else. All your cybersecurity needs can be met by OpenText.”

A 16-year Cisco veteran who joined OpenText eight months ago, Lababidi has put together a new team to drive partner sales and enablement. “We wanted to make sure our resources and the talent is built around our partner needs,” he said.

OpenText’s enablement team is working with partners to maximize sales as they come on board, said Lababidi. “Our enablement team are ambassadors that talk our partners through and show them how to log into the portal and how to engage with us,” he said. “That team has been doing a phenomenal job.”

OpenText Cybersecurity has already combined the two disparate partner portals from Webroot and Carbonite with plans to also integrate Zix and AppRiver into the portal, said Lababidi. That will provide partners a single platform for deal registration, certification and training, he said.

“We want to make sure we are known for our ease of doing business,” he said. “We are 100 percent focused on our partners. We want to make sure that our partners feel they have all the assets and resources they need under one platform, which is Accelerate, [OpenText’s partner program].”

For OpenText’s fiscal year 2024, which starts July 1, OpenText expects to add 800 to 1,000 new partners, said Lababidi.

The tiered OpenText Accelerate partner program rewards higher levels of participation with more benefits, including market development funds and pre-and post sales support. “What makes the difference in any channel or partner strategy comes down to engagement and how easy it is do business with you,” he said.

Lababidi credited OpenText CEO Mark Barrenechea with driving a security and data protection vision that has reshaped the security and data protection SMB landscape. “His amazing vision has brought in top-notch acquisitions that has made us an end-to-end security, data protection and overall cyber resilience vendor,” he said.

MSPs have a “great opportunity” to expand and scale their business with OpenText, said Lababidi. He said OpenText’s entire training and certification program is free of charge for partners. “We want to make sure partners understand the entire portfolio and that they can sign up to train their teams to provide all our offerings to their customers,” he said.